10 WordPress Problems with Solutions

Wordpress is NO.1 choice for most people either for blog or web development purpose. However, you might run into problems easily in using the software as time goes by. We have collected some of the most common wordpress errors with fast solutions to get your website back. Similar solutions might available too on other places, but we will provide the most simple practice based our editorial experience.

1. Admin user password lost

Lost your admin password is not a serious problem but it does happen frequently among wordpress users. The first thing you can try is "forget password" option from login page, mostly it should work and you'll get password in your contact email account. But what happen if the option not working? Just several steps below to reset it:

  • Login and navigate to "phpmyadmin"
  • Select your database from left panel then click "SQL" on top navigation.
  • Type the following query then click the Go button.

UPDATE wp_users SET user_pass = MD5('newpassword') WHERE user_login = "admin";

Please replace "newpassword" with the password you wanted. Once done, you can login to admin panel via new password.

2. WordPress admin dashboard is not arranged properly

The problem is caused by either your local firewalls or plugin compatibility. Some firewall will block website css files so the first you can try is to disable firewall for a while then check if it's working properly. If not, you can now check if there's any upgradable plugin. Upgrade if any, or deactivate it if still not working.

3. Warning: Cannot modify header information – headers already sent by

The problem is normally caused by spaces in wp-config.php. To solve this error, just open this file then remove all spaces after "?>" tag and make sure nothing exists after it.

4. WordPress admin dashboard blank

This problem is normally produced after a new wordpress theme installation or wordpress upgrade. Except for the admin dashboard, your entire blog is showing a blank page. There're 2 solutions available for quick fix.

Rename current installed theme folder via control panel file manager or FTP. This will switch your wordpress site to use default theme so you can login to admin again after that.

Reset plugin folder via file manager or FTP. Rename "plugins" folder to "plugins-old", refresh your wordpress site and see if it's working. Mostly it should work based our experience. If not, you can try to move your plugins from "plugins-old" to "plugin" one by one and check if any plugin is not compatible with your current version wordpress.

5. Fatal error: Allowed memory size of 33554432 bytes exhausted

This error is because of the php memory size limitation on server. We can easily by pass the limit via wp-config.php file by following steps below:

Open your wp-config.php file then add this line: define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '64M');

6. You are not authorized to view this page (403 error)

You receive an error message "You are not authorized to view this page. (403 error)" after inserting the username and password in the wordpress login page.

Most probaly your blog is hosted on a windows server where "index.php" is missing from default page value. What you need to do is to add "index.php" to your website default page in control panel. It's called "Directory Indexes" from most control panel software.

7. Fatal error undefined function is_network_admin()

This error is mostly caused by a failure auto upgrade over wordpress site. The simple fix is to upgrade manually as suggested by wordpress official. Full details about manual upgrade can be found on this wordpress page:  http://codex.wordpress.org/Updating_WordPress#Manual_Update

8. WordPress Admin Login 404 Issue

The problem is because you have changed your wordpress site url to another address or your file permission is not set properly.

To update your wordpress site address, please follow steps below:

  • Go to phpmyadmin and find "wp_options" table, click on Browse
  • Find "siteurl" under the field option_name then click edit
  • Change the URL to your current domain address for option_value then press "go" button

If your site url is correct and you still get the error, it should be your file permission on wp-admin, wp-content and wp-includes directories. Set file permissions to "755" via control panel or ftp program then refresh your site again. It will work.

9. "Briefly unavailable for scheduled maintenance" message remainins after an automatic upgrade

The error is produced after an automatic wordpress upgrade. The solution is to remove .maintenance file under your blog root directory. the .maintenance file is placed by wordpress during an automatic upgrade to notify visitors that the site in under a short maintenance. It might not be deleted after upgrade so you need to remove it manually.

10. Can't delete a plugin

If you have deleted a plugin in wordpress admin but it still appears even after you have deleted the directory via FTP. It's because the plugin might had uploaded some hidden/nested files inside the plugin directory which didn't appear in FTP. For this case, you have to delete it from ssh

If you have SSH access to your blog,

  • Login your site via SSH.
  • Use SSH commands to nagivate "../wp-content/plugins/".
  • Use ls -al to see the full list of folders.
  • Delete the particular plugin folder with rm (Folder Name).

The original posting is published by Kay Tan, however we have simplified it based our experience. If you like to check other solutions, you can find it on this posting.

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